Pre-school teachers should be professionally trained, academically qualified and have ethics and moral behaviours. Not only that, but to have intrinsic motivation and the eagerness for continuous learning and upgrading the local Early Childhood program.
Pre-school teachers should be professionally trained to carry out a complex and socially valued role for which expertise is defined (ward, 1987, p7) Whereas, Lindberg and Swedlow (1985, p283) wrote that “ a professional is someone committed to maintaining and enhancing society through helping people achieve a higher quality of living”. Professional has command of a body of knowledge acquired through study and practice.
One of the hallmarks of a professional is the continued updating and articulation of the knowledge base of the profession. To quote again from Lindberg and Swedlow (1985, p.283), “people in a profession have a genuine respect for the work they do and the people they serve…(and) strive to maintain and develop even higher standards both for their own personal behavior and for their profession.
Early childhood education is a profession and that pre-school teachers need to improve their advocacy and our status. Early childhood professionals need to develop skills which will enable them to work effectively with families and the wider community (a people person). They must be able to articulate the whys, hows and of their teaching approach.
Behaving professionally means behaving autonomously (independent), rationally and ethically in exercise of one’s knowledge and skills (Peters 1998, p3)
Keith-Lucas (1980, p245) wrote of the characteristic of a profession (trained and qualified pre-school teacher):